Things That Delay Your Period
A missed period is often the first sign of pregnancy, but there are other reasons for lateness, too. Here are some other factors that can delay your monthly flow:
Extreme diet and exercise
A healthy diet and regular exercise can do wonders for your health. But if you overdo it, you might say bye-bye to your periods, at least temporarily.
Athletes who train really hard or who dont get enough calories may stop menstruating, Dr. Higgins says. Its the bodys way of telling you that it doesnt have enough resources to support a pregnancy.
When your periods stop due to weight loss, diet or exercise, youre experiencing secondary amenorrhea. This means you previously had periods, but they have stopped. Secondary amenorrhea might happen to you if you:
- Eat an extreme, calorie-restricted diet.
- Have an eating disorder, such as anorexia or bulimia.
- Lose a lot of weight in a short amount of time.
- Undergo hardcore exercise training, such as for a .
Polycystic ovary syndrome
PCOS is a hormonal imbalance that interferes with the release of an egg . When you dont ovulate, you usually dont have a period. Many people with PCOS have irregular, late or missing periods. Other symptoms of PCOS include:
- Excess facial or body hair.
- Thinning hair.
- Weight gain or trouble losing weight.
Doctors diagnose PCOS by checking your symptoms and performing medical tests when needed. Medication and lifestyle changes can help manage the symptoms.
Some examples of major stress include:
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- A late period can be caused by being under or overweight, changes in birth control, and pregnancy.
- If it has been more than 30 days since your last period, you should take a pregnancy test.
- If you’re pregnancy test is negative and your period hasn’t arrived, see a doctor.
A missing or late period can be a stressful experience. Menstrual cycles vary in length from person to person, so a late period is relative. The average menstrual cycle length is 28 days, but it can range from 21 to 45 days depending on your age.
A late period, says Jennifer Lincoln, MD, an OB-GYN at Providence Health & Services Oregon, is any period that comes after you would normally expect it depending on your cycle length. It can be caused by a number of situations, from stress to pregnancy.
Here are some reasons your period may be late and when you may need to see a doctor.
How Late Should My Period Be Before I Take A Pregnancy Test
You should wait to take a pregnancy test until the week after your missed period for the most accurate result. If you don’t want to wait until you’ve missed your period, you should wait at least one to two weeks after you had sex. If you are pregnant, your body needs time to develop detectable levels of HCG.
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When To Visit The Ob/gyn
A rule of thumb when dealing with periods is that one or two irregular months arent abnormal, but anything more is worth a phone call to our office. Amenorrhea, which is the absence of periods, can be caused by a number of factors, and we can help diagnose and treat those issues.
Have you noticed something is off with your menstrual cycle? Bring your problems to Dr. Serrano at Serrano OBGyn. You can make an appointment by calling our office in San Antonio, Texas, at 210-761-5309, or visit our contact page for more information.
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What Is A Late Period
Although a few people might have pinpoint predictability with periods, most have a little variation. So if your period is a day or two late, dont panic.
Your menstrual cycle is the length of time from day one of your period to day one of your next period, Dr. Higgins says. On average, these cycles are 24 to 38 days long.
That means that a 28-day cycle one month and a 26-day cycle the next month is probably nothing to worry about. Your period might be considered late if:
- Its been more than 38 days since your last period.
- Youre normally really regular, and your period is more than three days late.
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You Contracted Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
Another condition that can severely affect your menstrual cycle is pelvic inflammatory disease .
According to Mayo Clinic, PID occurs when bacteria makes its way into the vagina and cervix. Normally, it starts out as another sexually transmitted infection, like chlamydia or gonorrhea, that presents external symptoms. As the infection spreads to the cells of the uterus, it can lead to problems with menstruation.
The Office on Women’s Health lists irregular menstrual cycles as one of the symptoms of PID. There are other symptoms associated with it too, like pelvic pain, fever, and pain during sex.
If you suspect that PID is the reason for your abnormal menstruation patterns, it’s important to see a doctor. Untreated PID can lead to serious complications, like fallopian tube scarring and infertility.
Whats The Short Answer
Its common not to get a period after stopping the pill, explains Gil Weiss, MD, assistant professor of clinical medicine at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Illinois.
The phenomenon is called post-pill amenorrhea, Dr. Weiss continues. The pill suppresses your bodys normal production of hormones that are involved in your menstrual cycle.
He says it can take several months for your body to return to its normal production, and therefore several months for your period to return.
But, in some cases, there is another reason for late or missed periods.
It can be something as simple as lifestyle factors like stress or exercise. Or it could be an underlying condition like hypothyroidism.
Discover other factors that could be causing your post-pill period problem, and how to get your cycle back on track.
Stress can affect the delicate hormonal balance that controls your menstrual cycle.
Stress induces the hormone cortisol, says Kecia Gaither, MD, who specializes in OB-GYN and maternal fetal medicine.
This, she says, can interfere with the hormonal regulation of menses via the circuit between the brain, ovaries, and uterus.
Other symptoms of stress to look out for include muscle tension, headaches, and sleeplessness.
You may also experience signs of stomach discomfort such as bloating, or mood problems like sadness and irritability.
While small amounts of stress are unlikely to cause changes, long-term or significant stress levels can stop periods.
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Doing Too Much Exercise
The stress that intense physical activity places on your body can affect the hormones responsible for your periods. Losing too much body fat through intense exercise can also stop you ovulating.
You’ll be advised to reduce your level of activity if excessive exercise has caused your periods to stop.
If you’re a professional athlete, you may benefit from seeing a doctor who specialises in sports medicine. They’ll be able to give you advice about how to maintain your performance without disrupting your periods.
Can You Miss A Period And Not Be Pregnant
Yes! Pregnancy isnt the only thing that can cause a missed period. Hormonal imbalances, such as those caused by polycystic ovary syndrome or follicular cysts, can make you miss your period. Stress, hormonal birth control, excessive exercise, malnutrition, breastfeeding, chronic diseases, and certain drugs can all cause you to miss a period.
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You Recently Took An International Flight
When we travel across time zones, “the loss or gain of hours… affects your circadian rhythm, which in turn influences the hormones that regulate your menstrual cycle,” Druet says.
Because our circadian rhythm is intimately connected with our menstrual cycles, it could take a period or two before your hormones are back in balance with the time zone you’ve settled into. So don’t be surprised if your period decides to be extra stubborn when you and your bestie take that trip to Europe you’ve been planning for a while. “Also, be aware that your fertile window may be different,” Druet advises.
How Soon Can You Tell If You Are Pregnant
Most health care providers recommend that you wait until the first day of your missed period to take a pregnancy test, because taking a test too soon after conception can lead to a false-negative result. However, some tests are more sensitive than others and can be taken as soon as 7 to 12 days after conception. The most precise way to determine pregnancy is to take a blood test to measure your level of hCG.
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How To Know If Your Period Is Late
It can be hard to know if your period is late, if you donât know your average cycle length or when your last period was. With Clue you can view your recent period dates, cycle averages and predictions for your next three cycles. You can set a reminder to let you know when your period is coming, and to alert you if itâs late.
I Got My Period Very Late Should I Take A Pregnancy Test Can I Take It On My Period
By | Sept. 10, 2013, 3:21 p.m.
So, my period was 13 days late and I just got it today, should I still take a pregnancy test? If so, should I wait until Im off my period or is it ok to take it while Im still on it?
Late periods can be stressful, but try to chill out: getting your period is a sign that youre not pregnant. Periods can be late for all kinds of reasons, like weight changes, increase in exercise, hormones, and stress. Its also really common for periods to change in timing and flow during the first few years of your menstrual cycle, while your body develops and settles into a pattern. This is probably whats causing your period to be tardy for the party.
It is possible to be pregnant and have light bleeding that seems kind of like a period, but its not the same as a period. If you really feel like something is wrong, check with your doctor or a Planned Parenthood health center. And yes, you can take a pregnancy test even if youre having bleeding. If taking a pregnancy test will ease your mind, go for it theyre usually about $15 at the drug store.
Since you asked about pregnancy, Im guessing its because youre having vaginal sex. Its great that youre thinking about the possible consequences of sex, like unplanned pregnancy. You should think about using a good method of birth control so you dont have to worry in the future. And remember that its also important to protect against STDs too, by using condoms and getting tested.
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A Late Period Under 16
Many teenagers want to know why their period is late. For many, the first few years of menstruation involve irregular periods.
The body is still developing in this stage of life, and a teens ovaries do not always release an egg monthly. This may result in irregular cycles fewer than 20 or more than 45 days. A typical cycle for teenagers lasts between 21 and 45 days.
Having fluctuating periods for two years or less during adolescence is likely nothing to worry about. Your health care provider can conduct a physical exam to make sure everythings healthy. Teens cycles start to regulate as their hormone levels stabilize, although some will still have irregular cycles on an ongoing basis.
Continue monitoring your body. When your period comes, use Flo to log the date and your symptoms. The app can help you better predict your period, even if you have an irregular cycle.
How Long Can Stress Delay Your Period
The average menstrual cycle is 28 days long, although its normal for a menstrual cycle to be anywhere from 21 to 35 days, and this can vary by a few days each cycle without being considered late.
A general rule of thumb is that a period is considered late if it is delayed by five days or more.
Anyone who gets a period will probably experience a late period at least once in their life. It may come as a surprise that stress is actually a very common cause for a late period. If a period is delayed due to stress, how late it is depends on many factors, including the amount of stress, coping abilities, and the persons individual cycle.
If the stress is acute, your period might only be a few days late, but some people who experience severe chronic stress can go months without getting a period.
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Why Is My Period Late Reasons Aside From Pregnancy:
Stress not only wreaks havoc on your mental health, it can have a physical impact too. Stress activates a hormonal pathway in the body, encouraging the release of the stress hormone cortisol that works to control the stress response in the body. Cortisol release can suppress normal levels of reproductive hormones, potentially leading to abnormal ovulation, which can disrupt your cycle.
Jet lag can throw off your menstrual cycle, so if youve been travelling recently, that could be the reason your period is late. When you travel across time zones, you suddenly become exposed to light at different times of the day. This, above all, throws off your circadian rhythms, which work in tandem with your menstrual cycle. Research has shown that even a small amount of dim, artificial light triggers hormonal changes in the body. This is especially true if you travel from west to east as its harder for your body to adjust to a shorter day you lose time going east.
In the same way that a stomach flu or a common cold affects your digestive system and respiration, it is likely to have some impact on your menstrual cycle too. If you notice that your period is a little late, and you were ill the previous month, its likely that your illness had some part to play.
6. Change in routine
7. Excessive exercise
8. Weight loss or gain
Consider your mind fully put at rest .
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Your Weight Has Been Fluctuating
According to UC Riverside Health, both the ovaries and fat cells throughout the body produce estrogen. This means a sudden increase or decrease in weight can alter your period.
A 2012 study published in the Endocrinology and Metabolism Journal also found that irregular periods are more prevalent in individuals who suddenly gain or lose weight.
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